Approaching 2020 Eight Days Ahead

It’s that time of year when evergreen trees are dressed with decorative ornaments and glowing lights, houses are granted makeovers and stripped of familiar content. The spending fever hits 100 degrees – a global epidemic. Yes, it’s Christmas!! The Christmas season is a time of reflection on the eventful year, the birth of Jesus Christ. A time to give back and help others in need. For others, it’s a time of fun and shopping. This when rational goes on vacation and his cousin irrational visits for the holidays.

Then January makes a grand entrance, with a gift, thirty-one (31) days that feel like ninety (90). The days move languidly as if they have arthritis, as we wait for the next paycheck. Let us ensure that all our fixed expenses are covered before we make any other purchases.

It’s time to reflect on the pros and cons of 2019. Let us adapt 2020 vision for the New Year and eliminate all the blind spots. Change and growth aren’t spontaneous, they manifest from deliberate strategy. When you are aware of your shortcomings and areas of opportunity you can conquer all. When you are ignorant, you succumb to defeat. What goals do you want to achieve in the New Year? Identify the biggest threats and erase them. The most common are self-limiting beliefs, procrastination and inconsistency.

Don’t wait for the year to end, start creating your action plan now. Your action plan should be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely). Construct an action plan with the 5 W’s in mind.

  • Why are you doing it? The purpose
  • When will you accomplish it? Realistic Timelines
  • Who will you ask for assistance? Human Resources
  • What materials and activities are needed? Resources / Specific Tasks
  • Where can you achieve this goal? Location

You can achieve any goal you desire.


Conformist or Instigator

Recently, I was traveling in a taxi and I was caught in the middle of a verbal exchange between another passenger and the driver. En route to the promised destination, the driver announced that my destination was the final stop. Prior to this, he had received a phone call. The other passenger – as expected, got upset and made the utterance “driver you broke the rule”. The passenger had initially told the driver where he was going and the driver agreed to take him there.

The driver then colored the passenger miserable and tried to make justification for his decision. In his opinion the passenger emotions were unwarranted. “This no need no argument, simple ting, stan up rite deh so, an quick time yuh get a ride. The passenger had no choice but to do as instructed. His facade was more disappointment than anger. Words fueled with fury oozed from the driver’s mouth. “Him a talk bout bruk rule, him no see seh no rule no deh again. Everybody a do dem own ting”.

I think what the passenger meant was that the driver gave him his ‘word‘. In the ‘good ole days,’ your word was enough. It was like an invisible signature stapled to the atmosphere that you would follow through. Nowadays, your ‘word’ doesn’t carry much weight. It is decorated with holes resulting from a pang of broken promises. How does a broken promise make you feel?

Breaking your promise can also be seen as breaking the rules. Do you agree that there are no such things as rules anymore? I strongly disagree. Rules are always in place; they are not always enforced and some people choose to ignore them.

Rules are a control measure. Control depends on who is pulling the strings or who has the remote. Full control of my life I hand over the reins to God. I try to follow HIS Ten Commandments, which are a set of Universal rules that one chooses to follow or not.

All rules are laced with consequences. But we all have a choice. Rules are everywhere; at church, at school, in the workplace, at the supermarket just to name a few. It is my belief that if you join/visit an organization should try to abide by the rules. If you don’t like the rules leave. Similarly, if you make a promise, be sincere, try to uphold your part of the deal. To avoid the ripple effects of your actions.

Recipe For Happiness

Happiness is not a destination, it’s a state of mind. Have you ever been in a situation, where you said as soon as I get through this then I will be happy? I will be so happy when I get that promotion, my dream car, or when my baby arrives. Just to realize that when you reach your goal, it doesn’t make you happy or it’s not enough. So you start working on something else that you think will make you happy.

We all know of someone by society’s standards they have it all. But they are not happy. Emotional turmoil is a constant companion. Over time, they start to abuse drugs, just as a means to escape their demons. True happiness lies within and it is not based on our circumstances or material things.

There are five components that I believe are necessary in the recipe for happiness. These include, Gratitude, Respect, Exercise, Attitude and Trust (GREAT).

Gratitude is the most powerful catalyst for happiness. When we are thankful for our possessions, the opportunities given, friendships, relationships, triumphs, and even failures, it creates a shift. We start attracting greater things in our lives.

Respect for yourself and others is key for happiness. Respect expands your circle to include people who can and are willing to help you. No one who achieves success does so without the help of others. Respect is like a magnet that pulls people to you, to make your life easier. Respect strengthens the bond of love. Love is the epiphany of happiness.

Exercise improves your life. Physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier, more relaxed and less anxious. From boosting your mood, your confidence and energy. Regular exercise helps prevent or manage several health problems and concerns.

The right attitude is everything! A positive outlook on life is the key to happiness. Cultivate positive thoughts everyday. You deserve to be happy. In life there are many storms. We are either going through a storm, coming out of a storm, or heading towards a storm. Nevertheless, we can still choose to be happy. However, we cannot be happy unless we serve a restraining order to anger, regret and unforgiveness.

To be happy we need to trust God and HIS plans for our life. We spend so much time, energy and resources trying to figure out everything on our own. This is a major source of unhappiness – uncertainty. We have so many questions, God has all the answers. Let us ask HIM today. Remember God cannot lie and he doesn’t make mistakes.

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